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Category: Joint Force Quarterly

March 29, 2016

Fighting Ebola: An Interagency Collaboration Paradigm

An old fable tells that a single stick by itself is weak; bundled with others, however, the stick will be much stronger. Likewise, during the world’s 2014–2015 response to the Ebola crisis in Liberia, interagency, intergovernmental, and international forces were strong and firmly united, moving forward with a singular agenda. If, on the other hand, all 100-plus organizations had not been united by the Liberian government to stamp out Ebola, the effort would have been weak and ineffective.

March 29, 2016

Cheap Technology Will Challenge U.S. Tactical Dominance

The convergence of dramatic improvements in the fields of robotics, artificial intelligence, materials, additive manufacturing, and nanoenergetics is dramatically changing the character of conflict in all domains. This convergence is creating a massive increase in capabilities available to increasingly smaller political entities—extending even to the individual. This new diffusion of power has major implications for the conduct of warfare, not the least of which are the major hazards or opportunities that it presents to medium and even small powers. The outcome will depend on the paths they choose.

March 29, 2016

If We Fight Joint, Shouldn't Our History Reflect That?

American forces are fighting joint as never before in conjunction with the armed forces of allied nations. Joint and combined operations in Afghanistan and Iraq and current operations over Iraq and Syria have demonstrated conclusively that the Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act of 1986 came at the right time and has subsequently produced impressive results.

Jan. 1, 2016

The Future of Department of Defense Global Health Engagement

The term global health has come into common usage in recent years and encompasses various matters relevant to health, including diseases that cross international borders, factors that affect public health globally, and the interconnectedness of health matters around the globe. Diseases that have been unevenly distributed across the world have been of concern to militaries for centuries, perhaps throughout history. Historians record that the decimation of Napoleon’s army during his invasion of Russia was the result of starvation, severe weather, and disease, the most important of which was typhus, which killed over 80,000 troops.1 His retreating army then spread typhus throughout Europe. Likewise, typhoid fever was a serious problem in World War I and the American Civil War.2 Spanish troops were severely affected by yellow fever during the Spanish-American War, and Spanish influenza had disproportionate and decisive effects during World War I.3 Colonization of Africa, Asia, and Latin America by Western powers led to increased awareness of diseases that were generally exotic to the imposing country, motivating interest in developing means of prevention and control of diseases. Examples of efforts emanating from such interest include the work of Walter Reed and William C. Gorgas in defining the transmission and prevention of yellow fever, research regarding cholera and diarrhea in Bangladesh, and the establishment of research laboratories (for example, the Pasteur Institute and Medical Research Council laboratories in Africa). Conversely, the invasion and colonization of foreign lands has also long been known to result in the introduction of exotic disease into the occupied lands, with the importation of smallpox and syphilis into North America by colonists as outstanding examples.

Jan. 1, 2016

The Aegis Warship: Joint Force Linchpin for IAMD and Access Control

Under defense strategic guidance, U.S. combatant commanders have been rebalancing joint forces along the Asia-Pacific Rim with recalibrated capabilities to shape the regional security environments in their areas of responsibility. The mission of what the 2012 guidance calls “Joint Force in 2020” is to project stabilizing force to support our allies and partners, and to help maintain the free flow of commerce along sea lines of communication in the globalized economic system.

Oct. 1, 2015

Strategic Development of Special Warfare in Cyberspace

How does the United States develop a strategic cyber-enabled special warfare capability? Why are regional powers such as Iran and Russia better prepared for cyber-enabled special warfare operations than the United States?

Oct. 1, 2015

Transforming Defense Analysis

The Defense Intelligence Enterprise is on the precipice of tremendous change. The global environment is experiencing a mind-numbing quantity and diversity of challenging crises.

July 1, 2015

Rapid Regeneration of Irregular Warfare Capacity

There is widespread agreement among the public and in the foreign and defense communities that the United States should avoid “another Iraq” or “another Afghanistan”—that is, another large-scale, long-term, and highly costly stability operation. President Obama’s reluctance to put “boots on the ground” in Iraq is but the most recent example of this reaction against the high costs and questionable outcomes of the conflicts in those two countries.

July 1, 2015

Vertical and Horizontal Respect: A Two-Dimensional Framework for Ethical Decisionmaking

Everyone wants to be a good person; at least that tends to be a fundamental assumption about most of the people we work with in the Department of Defense (DOD). Yet the newspapers are frequently filled with articles about officers, enlisted members, and civilians falling from grace. Why do so many people make bad choices?

July 1, 2015

Detangling the Web: A Screenshot of U.S. Government Cyber Activity

Blackouts. School testing. Electrical grids. Insurance. These all have one major thing in common: they have all been targets for cyber attacks in a period of two weeks during March 2015. The United States faces thousands of cyber assaults every day. States, state-sponsored organizations, other groups and individuals all combine to incessantly probe, spy on, and attack public and private organizations as well as denizens of the United States. These ongoing problems require a U.S. Government response, so it adopted a bureaucratic approach that has resulted in a complex system that is constantly evolving as new problems are recognized. This article provides a comprehensive look at how the United States has organized to address these challenges. Although U.S. Government efforts seem sizable, private use of the Internet dwarfs government usage.